[I'm often surprised by how popular our simpler and more minimal Joomla templates are. Along with themes like corporate, lifestyle and the recent Highline I often see less complex themes like simpleshop, zen default and rasa featuring at the top of our download stats.
So this month rather than bringing you a single template release, we would like to introduce Zen Building Blocks. The Zen Building Blocks are a set of five responsive Joomla templates that are designed to be ideal starting points for your Joomla web projects.
I have wanted to create a Jomsocial template for such a long time that I feel like I have just ticked something off my bucket list. I'd be surprised if you didn't already know about Jomsocial but for those that don't - Jomsocial is the premier social networking extension for Joomla.
Building the demo site for the Highline Jomsocial Template was the first chance I've had to play with Jomsocial (at least for an extended amount of time) and I have to say that this is a really solid piece of software. While I recognise that not everyone needs a social app on their website, I can certainly see why this is the chosen extension among Joomla web site builders for creating social or community driven websites.
The key point for the Highline Jomsocial template is that in keeping with all of our Joomla template releases since September last year - it is responsive. This means that with the help of the Highline template, the Jomsocial component will morph and scale according to the width of your users browser. This essentially means that within this one joomla template you get an elegant, minimal Jomsocial template that will work across any browser - large or small.
Way back in April we released Zenkit - a collection of responsive K2 templates and I've just taken the covers off two new demo sites that showcase what you can do with Zenkit.
If you missed the announcement, Zenkit is a small set of stand alone K2 templates that can be dropped into any Joomla template.
The Intrepid Joomla template is our first template release in the last two months.
I explained in this blog some of the reasons why we had fallen behind schedule and despite my best efforts, my estimate regarding Intrepid's release date proved to be a little optimistic.
So in an effort to draw the proverbial line in the sand that I spoke so valiantly about, Intrepid is now our July template release and all members have been given an extra two months to compensate for skipping the previous two months.
With this revised schedule we will have the August template release available in the first week of August and thus we will be back on track to release all future templates within the first week of the month.
Well I'm glad you asked ... Intrepid is the latest of our responsive Joomla templates that has a tonne of intelligent browser scaling and switching that will make your clients love you and keep you fixated on resizing your browser when developing your site.
The Intrepid Joomla template is a stylish mix of business, blog, news portal and gallery rolled into one with all of the power and flexibility of our Zen Grid Framework, Zentools and Zenkit power tools.
A few days a go I dribbbled some screenshots of our next Joomla template which is due for release in the next few weeks. I really wanted to push a rich, corporate colour pallette on this one as well as play around with some noticeably different responsive layouts.
I've seen some comment that responsive design isn't applicable for complex or intricate layouts. The more I work with responsive design I think that pretty much anything is possible. Of course it helps to have a nice responsive framework to sit underneath the design, but at this point, (and I might be proved wrong at some point) I think that most perceived limitations are self-imposed.
Checkout the screenshots of the design below and let us know what you think. Not all of the details have been filled in (or finalised) but you can get the picture. Also the logo is just a little placeholder for the time being.
I've just released the Corporate Joomla template which is one of my personal favorite responsive joomla templates to date. It's a clean design that features a background slideshow, some elegant pixelated styling, a whopping 26 colour schemes, support for our brand new Zenkit K2 templates. In addition to this Corporate is available in a our newly realised quickstart packages (see below).
As I mentioned in the post announcing the template, Corporate is a more business savvy version of our popular Lifestyle template that was released back in January of this year. We went a little overboard on this template in terms of Colour schemes and so you can choose from 26 Colour schemes, 18 different button hilites and a selection of useful and colourful module classes.
If you missed it yesterday (well you just have to look at the post below this one) we released a new product line that we are extremely excited about. The Zenkit templates are stand alone template for K2 designed to fit into any Joomla template that add some very nifty layout options for your K2 content.
Zenkit templates are currently only available to club members however in the next few days to a week we will be releasing a lite version that we will make available for free to non club members.
The Zenkit layouts cover most of the layouts available with our Zentools module with the exception of a carousel. We have plans to add a carousel layout in the next major version.
In the meantime what are the types of layouts that you would like to see added to the Zenkit templates? We are certainly open to building on the layouts available and your suggestions are more than welcome.
Since the release of the Avanti Joomla template way back in January 2010, we have packaged an individually styled k2 template for each template released. In most cases re-using those k2 templates in other templates was a tricky process and success varied depending on your ability to read code. Zenkit is set to change all of that by providing a selection of standalone k2 templates that can be used in any Joomla template and easily transferred between templates.
The Zenkit templates make it easy to create complex and interesting layouts from your existing K2 content using the core K2 functionality. Using the Zenkit templates means that there is no longer any need to resort to using modules in your content when you really could just use a K2 category layout.
Deciding on the final design for a Joomla template can sometimes be a challenge.
I can think of more than a handful of designs that had two, three or even four potentially "final" iterations, that would have made great templates but may never make the leap from PSD to Joomla template to your Joomla website.
There are a lot of factors that we take into consideration when deciding the type of template to release and I often hold back on releasing a design that is similar to a recent theme in the interest of keeping our catalogue fresh and diverse.
In light of this, I'd like to give you a quick peek at the the Corporate Lifestyle template which will be available by the end of April.
This design has it's roots in the Lifestyle template from back in January and as you can see from the screenshot below it has a few things in common with the original - a large background slideshow, a black and bold navigation strip, subtle transparency shadow type effects on the navigation etc.
Whereas Lifestyle focussed on an arts / creative / business type websites, Corporate Lifestyle will focus squarely on users that need a striking business Joomla template, with a strong focus on typography, white space and of course that stunning full width slideshow.
Development for the theme is really starting to take shape now and I'm confident that it will be available for you to play with by the end of the month.
You can check the screenshot after the jump.
Vintage is our new tumblr inspired Joomla template that features multiple colour schemes a simple tagging system for your content and an elegantly executed responsive design.
Vintage is aimed at those users that want a simple blog style template to showcase their ideas, thoughts and inspiration. Consider it your online Joomla notebook - ready to record your every thought.
Before we get started here are some crucial links for you to check out the Vintage template.
The Vintage demo site shows a simple one column layout with site links, search and other modules you would normally see in the side bar, hidden in the hidden panel . But if that isn't quite your cup of tea, since this theme is built on the flexible zen grid framework you can have a more traditional two, three or four column layout.
Vintage comes with some flexible options including 5 background variations, eight Colour highlights and eight different tag Colour schemes. The tags are automatically populated in the k2 Joomla template and you can also use them across module classes on the page. There are ten different tag module classes available. The images are delivered on the page using a sprite which means you can load as many of the Mage based module classes n the page without worrying about excess htt requests or an increased page weight.
Vintage is our seventh responsive Joomla Template and as you can see in the images below, it morphs and changes according to the width of the browser that you are viewing it in.
We like this approach to creating mobile ready Joomla templates because it means your site has an elegantly executed mobile design but you don't have to do any ectra work.
Over night Jeff Channell posted some information regarding the privilege escalation vulnerability recently found in Joomla 2.5. If you haven't already updated, then it's advised that you upgrade to the latest version of Joomla via the Joomla update process as soon as possible.
A big thanks goes out to Jeff for spotting and fixing this - the Joomla world is a safer place when Jeff is on the case.
All of our quickstart packages for Joomla templates that are compatible with Joomla 2.5 have also been updated. In addition to this I have spent some time in our download area over the last few days and caught up on culling the old unsupported joomla packages and relabelling the packages where necessary.